F.B.I. Secretly Bought Israeli Spyware and Explored Hacking U.S. Phones

Image Credit: Bryce Haymond - Wikipedia Commons

It is widely regarded as the world’s most potent spyware, capable of reliably cracking the encrypted communications of iPhone and Android smartphones.

The software, Pegasus, made by an Israeli company, NSO Group, has been able to track terrorists and drug cartels. It has also been used against human rights activists, journalists and dissidents.

Now, an investigation published Friday by The New York Times Magazine has found that Israel, which controls the export of the spyware, just as it does the export of conventional weapons, has made Pegasus a key component of its national security strategy, using it to advance its interests around the world.